April 22 is Earth DayHow - Are You Celebrating?04/03/2022 ● By Lexie Briggs
Earth Day began in 1970 when politicians, environmentalists, and students banded together to hold teach-ins, protests, and parades promoting environmental action. Initially, Earth Day organizers intended the event to be relatively small with events on a few college campuses. But in 1970, environmentalism was building momentum and people realized that cleaning up the environment and saving animals from extinction were related, and they were ready to make their voices heard.
In the 1970s, the United States implemented several key laws, including the Endangered Species Act, the Clean Air Act, and the Clean Water Act, as a direct result of this increased interest in the stewardship of the planet. These laws helped to bring many species of animal back from the brink of extinction and decreased the levels of harmful pollutants in the air.
The work continues to this day. Many species of animals are still facing extinction from the destruction of habitats and the effects of climate change. More than 50 years after it began, Earth Day celebrations continue to be an essential part of the environmental movement.
This Earth Day, get inspired! Here are some ideas for how to spend Earth Day:
- Spread the word! Talk to your friends, family, and elected officials about how you feel about protecting the environment.
- Take a hike! Oregon has beautiful trails that are fun for all ages and skill levels. Make a scenic celebration of spring with a hike on Skinner Butte or Mount Baldy.
- Pick up trash in your neighborhood! Stewardship of the earth begins at home. Make your community a little cleaner by picking up trash in your neighborhood. Make sure you have gardening gloves and good walking shoes!
- Get inspired by nature and science! The Museum of Natural and Cultural History is hosting an Earth Day Celebration Weekend, Friday, April 22 through Sunday, April 24. Celebrate our home planet—and the people who steward it—with hands-on bilingual English-Spanish activities for the whole family. While you’re there, be sure to explore the Photo Ark exhibit and come face to face with some of the world’s most charismatic animals through stunning photography.
The Museum of Natural and Cultural History is open to the public Wednesday through Sunday, 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., and until 8:00 p.m. on Thursdays. Stay tuned to our website (mnch.uoregon.edu) and follow us on social media for the latest on our new lineup of online and in-person programs.
Lexie Briggs is the marketing and communications specialist for the Museum of Natural and Cultural History in Eugene, Oregon.
IMAGES AND CAPTIONS:
[Lemur photo]: © Photo by Joel Sartore/National Geographic Photo Ark. A Coquerel's sifaka, Propithecus coquereli, at the Houston Zoo, on view until May 29 at the Museum of Natural and Cultural History.
[Tiger photo] © Photo by Joel Sartore/National Geographic Photo Ark. A federally endangered Florida panther, Puma concolor coryi, at Tampa's Lowry Park Zoo, on view until May 29 at the Museum of Natural and Cultural History.
[Panther photo]: © Photo by Joel Sartore/National Geographic Photo Ark. A federally endangered Florida panther, Puma concolor coryi, at Tampa's Lowry Park Zoo, on view until May 29 at the Museum of Natural and Cultural History.